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Old 2011-09-16, 08:43 AM   [Ignore Me] #1
FIREk
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Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


So it's official now, and we can be 100% sure it won't change (if only because vehicle models have a set number of hatches). Tank drivers will control the main turret, leaving only the secondary gun in the hands of their gunner. This is bound to be a controversial topic...

Here are my thoughts:

1) There is a logic behind the main idea Higby mentioned - if you invested time in training tank certs, you deserve to not only be a chauffeur, but to take advantage of most of your tank. That's fair.

2) Because they will require less manpower, tanks are likely to be a lot "softer" now, especially if a skilled tank-buster knows how to get at the weaker sections of the armor. I always thought tanks could soak up way too much damage in PS1, so I would be more than happy with this.

3) This is how it has worked in all Battlefield games, all the way since BF1942, and there's no problem with that system there.

4) On the other hand, there are only 1-3 tanks per side on a Battlefield map. PS2 will be on a completely different scale, with 50 people being able to each pull a tank for themselves almost simultaneously, and roll those 50 tanks somewhere. So the way Battlefield mechanics are balanced towards overall gameplay doesn't have to translate well to PS2's scale.

5) On yet another hand , this can be resolved with appropriate vehicle spawn timer restrictions. If you can only roll, say, one tank every 10 minutes (maybe more), you will have to be careful not to get blown up. Therefore tanks are less likely to just swarm the battlefield, farming a few kills before being mowed down. Killing a tank will also be much more satisfying.

6) Being able to control the main gun saves zerg tank drivers the trouble of picking up an incompetent gunner, thus losing all possible fun in that particular tank.

7) It streamlines the process of tank warfare, removing any communication issues. Unlike real tanks, with a commander, driver and gunner (plus), we can't communicate as efficiently in a game (especially with randoms) and would likely have no convenient target marking tools.

8) That being said, it might make a lot more sense to give tank drivers control of the secondary gun - either arbitrarily, or optionally, but only if there's a second person in the tank. We don't fast seat-switching solo tanks with AA guns, do we?
There are quite a few good reasons for this. Tank drivers get to use the upgraded secondary gun they have to "pay" for. The secondary turret will rotate faster, making it easier to look around an navigate. Plus, since the tank would now require two people to function properly, it could be given tougher armor without compromising balance.
This would, however, necessitate turning the Magrider into a classic two-turret tank.

All in all, I think that, once the details get hammered out during beta we will be happy with this new system. What do you guys think?



Also, on the subject of vehicles being mostly functional with only one player controlling them:
1) Take note that Higby pretty much confirmed that the Linerator's pilot will be the bombardier as well. It will be a 2-seater, and the passenger will likely only operate the rear turret, which isn't required for the bomber to do its job.
If implemented correctly, this will be fair, since the Reaver and MBTs will also require only one person to use their vehicles' basic functionality.

2) I'm also under the impression that Higby semi-confirmed an optional co-pilot/gunner for the Reaver. In the interview with NapalmEnima he might have let slip that the two-seater from the early screenshot is a two-seater variant. Of course the design might have changed by now, just like the Mossie is said to have changed.

3) Buggies, however, can't work with only one person aboard, since they're too fast and fragile to both zoom past trees and aim sideways/backwards. Since their design would necessitate two people, they should be made into "glass cannons" with powerful weapons, but relying on speed alone to survive. They can't be the "poor man's tanks" from PS1 anymore.

Last edited by FIREk; 2011-09-26 at 03:38 AM.
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Old 2011-09-16, 08:50 AM   [Ignore Me] #2
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


The impression I got was that it wouldn't be single-manned unless you did the customization to make it so.

Even if it's immediate, most lightning drivers go straight into trees so I see single-manned tanks as more of a disadvantage compared to one that is fully manned with a focused driver and gunners.
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:04 AM   [Ignore Me] #3
Draep
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


I don't think this is a great idea. Remember driving around a lightning? PS1 was the first game to have tank drivers focusing exclusively on driving to great effect. Also, I think this kills the manpower requirements of tanks. Tanks should require a lot of teamwork and you are right to be punished by allowing greenies to gun for you.

Also think of the manpower dynamics PS1 had. You could field a lot more full strength vanguards and magriders because they only had two seats. To get a full strength prowler you needed a whole other person which could weaken the numerical strength of the TR, but it made for a more powerful tank than the other two when used properly (though the magrider could outrange the prowler all day, but I remember if I could get in close or sneak up to them, I could kill them faster than they could run away.)
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:05 AM   [Ignore Me] #4
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Originally Posted by Graywolves View Post
The impression I got was that it wouldn't be single-manned unless you did the customization to make it so.

Even if it's immediate, most lightning drivers go straight into trees so I see single-manned tanks as more of a disadvantage compared to one that is fully manned with a focused driver and gunners.
As far as I recall there weren't many trees in BF1942 and BF2, and you could mow down trees in BFBC2, so it wasn't a big problem there. Tanks in PS2 will likely have two-axis turret stabilization, making driving them a bit less chaotic, than driving a PS1 Lightning, I think.
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:37 AM   [Ignore Me] #5
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Personally, I liked the way it was done in PS1.

I always found it cumbersome to try and drive and gun at the same time, and it promoted *GASP* team work between driver and gunner to be successful.

I know the team work isn't gone now, but I feel like there were a good amount of people that enjoyed how the prowler and vanguard were, as opposed to the magrider. It added to the empire specific feel of fighting.
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:39 AM   [Ignore Me] #6
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


I don't like it,it takes away from the teamwork aspect of the game.there is a commitment to team work when you cert armor and need a gunner,don't take that out of the game,its a dynamic that made PS work.

everyone complains about one man armies and SOE wants to make tanks a solo veh?
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:41 AM   [Ignore Me] #7
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Originally Posted by HtSgtMAD View Post
I don't like it,it takes away from the teamwork aspect of the game.there is a commitment to team work when you cert armor and need a gunner,don't take that out of the game,its a dynamic that made PS work.

everyone complains about one man armies and SOE wants to make tanks a solo veh?
I'd say if anything make them require more people, not less.

Isn't there going to be thousands of people in this game?
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Old 2011-09-16, 09:58 AM   [Ignore Me] #8
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


I don't like it this one bit. I loved the team based tank (half the time I was in PS I was driving my VG). This is no different then how the Reaver is at the moment in PS due to how powerful with only being a single seater. Taking too much from Battlefield in my opinion.
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:07 AM   [Ignore Me] #9
Baron
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


I'm torn on this at the moment. I think it's too early to judge for certain since we can't see it "in action" however my initial instinct is not positive.

1) Not that PS2 (or any video game really) should be compared to real life, however no main battle tank can be driven and gunned by a single person crew.

2) Using some examples above by the OP, if you make the tank weaker (ability to soak less damage) AND give it weak points AND give it some large timer...this will be the death of that vehicle.

3) I think tank armor in PS1, pre-shield days, was a perfect balance of firepower vs. crew size vs. battlefield longevity. I do think the direction is moving a little TOO heavily toward the battlefield model.

4) If vehicles have some version of the defensive shield as in BF2142 that could compensate for the increased vulnerability (or make it completely invulnerable to small arms fire).... but have you jumped in the secondary gunner seat for a tank in BF2 or 2142? It's almost certain death.

Last edited by Baron; 2011-09-16 at 10:10 AM.
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:28 AM   [Ignore Me] #10
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Well being a mostly solo player my later days of PS, i can say it would have been really nice to drive a tank solo and gun ett. But i do agree in terms of balance and game play, it should be at the very least a two person thing.

If it is implemented with some skill tree, it should be at a major disadvantage to two/three person tank setup ups, and blown out of the water if the 2/3 person setups are all skilled for their respective tree in tank gunning/driving..
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:29 AM   [Ignore Me] #11
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


id imagine even if they are zerging without gunners.

aircraft and anti armor weapons will pick them apart like nothing without secondary gunners.

so free kills for me ^^
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:33 AM   [Ignore Me] #12
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Originally Posted by Draep View Post
I don't think this is a great idea. Remember driving around a lightning? PS1 was the first game to have tank drivers focusing exclusively on driving to great effect. Also, I think this kills the manpower requirements of tanks. Tanks should require a lot of teamwork and you are right to be punished by allowing greenies to gun for you.
Mostly this. I think it's very insightful to point out that PS1 was an exception in promoting "good" tank driving.

If you guys'll pardon me for copy/pasting my reply from the Interview thread on the topic...

I'm not willing to say that it's a make or break issue without playing what they're putting together, but I liked the two-man coordination that the MBTs (and, yes, Liberator) demanded to be effective. Did it suck to get stuck with a lousy gunner/driver/pilot? Sure. But that's not limited to vehicles. It sucks as a medic getting stuck with infantry that can't hit the broad side of the barn, too. That doesn't mean you get rid of support classes.

I like vehicles that require good coordination to be effective, and I like how that demand for higher degrees of participation (and staffing, if you will) provides a good balance point in exchange for high durability. Less than high durability, and, I would think, you start losing the right "feel" for a tank. And a one-man high durability vehicle with optional gunner seat (which makes me think like the prowler's 3rd seat) means you can run alone with 80% of a 2-man vehicle's effectiveness. Does that balance out? My gut says no, but I'm willing to wait and see before I bitch.

The logic does make sense, though. I cert the vehicle, I spend training time and resources on pimping it out, why should a random teammate get the gun? I'd rather see the gun and wheel separated, but have neither require the cert so long as one person in the vehicle is certed for it. That way, if you want to gun, you can pull your tank and climb in the gunner's seat and find a driver.
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:48 AM   [Ignore Me] #13
Baron
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


If you've ever been a secondary gunner for a Battlefield game:

1) It's pretty much a joke
2) Certain death

I hope PS2 gunners do not fall into the above categories. As the PS team has stated before, there is a large amount of customization so I still have faith that the secondary gunner can have some cool things to play with.

Last edited by Baron; 2011-09-16 at 10:49 AM.
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:51 AM   [Ignore Me] #14
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


Originally Posted by kaffis View Post
The logic does make sense, though. I cert the vehicle, I spend training time and resources on pimping it out, why should a random teammate get the gun? I'd rather see the gun and wheel separated, but have neither require the cert so long as one person in the vehicle is certed for it. That way, if you want to gun, you can pull your tank and climb in the gunner's seat and find a driver.
I like! When I drove around I never had any random team mates. I always had a outfit member gunning for me, but most of the time it was my OL. He got to be quite a good shot and I was a good driver. We actually got into our own style of using the VG that was effective if you knew how to gun with my driving. Now a days anyone who gets in my VG cannot stand my driving, since I had a dedicated one must of the time lol. I do not have no major issues with upgrading a tank for a gunner due to that.
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Old 2011-09-16, 10:58 AM   [Ignore Me] #15
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Re: Tank drivers acting as gunners in PS2


TTK for a tank steps in here. I wouldn't jump to assumptions just yet - a BF tank gets raped by just 2 AV shots. I think we should all wait for beta with this question. Even if the system they offer will be flawed (which I am, honestly, most sure of), deleting the skill from the tree is not very much of a drag.
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